Disturbing footage shows the gruesome underground bunker where a seven-year-old boy was held hostage by a suspected pedophile for 52 days.
The child was kidnapped as he got off his school bus by Dmitry Kopylov, 26, who allegedly sexually assaulted him.
A massive search involving thousands of police, military and volunteers sought to find the boy, who, according to sources, had been “brainwashed” by his kidnapper.
It was feared locally that he had been murdered, but his parents always hoped that he would be found alive.
The boy was rescued and reunited with his mother and father after a tip from Interpol.
Russian special forces cut through a steel door and broke a window to enter the den where he was being held.
The “brainwashed” boy “laughed with joy” when they entered, but wept later, reports said.
Kopylov became entangled after allegedly bragging about holding the boy in chats between pedophiles on the dark web.
The latest footage shows the chilling basement with a low ceiling and bare walls where the boy was locked up.
The creepy underground bunker with a prison bed and a heater was soundproof beneath Kopylov’s house in Makarikha, Vladimir, about 300 kilometers from Moscow.
A hatch door led to an even lower level and the alleged kidnapper lived upstairs.
When heavily armed officers stormed the building, the suspect was sitting on a bench with the boy.
The images show that Kopylov is being held by officers of the special forces.
While still in the hellhole, the boy – in the arms of a plain-clothes Russian policeman – overhears the officers calling names for smashing the window when they broke in.
The seven-year-old said, “You shouldn’t have broken this window.”
The officer said not to worry as he would be returning to his mother and father soon.
Kopylov, from Suzdal, carried out extensive renovations, including the construction of the underground bunker.
Colonel Irina Volk, of Russia’s Interior Ministry, said the tip about the boy had been received “from foreign colleagues through Interpol channels.”
The boy’s whereabouts had become apparent from “publications in the shadow segment of the Internet,” she said.
It is believed that US specialists were crucial in establishing the alleged pedophile’s identity with the help of agencies in other countries.
Interpol Secretary General Jürgen Stock said: “A young boy is back where he belongs – with his family – thanks to dedicated specialist officers and swift action from authorities around the world.”
But he cautioned, “While we are really happy that this story has a safe ending, there are still many children waiting to be saved.”
The child, who was rescued last week, underwent medical checks before going to his parents.
He is now receiving “strong psychological help,” it was revealed.
The boy’s father said, “He was very happy to see his mother.
He hugged and kissed her.
“We are overwhelmed with feelings …
“It’s an explosion of emotion and relief that the ordeal is over. Finally he has been found. “